GREENCASTLE, Ind. - Justine Johnston tossed her second-straight shutout, helping Defiance claim a 2-0 victory over Trine University in the opening round of the NCAA Regional Tournament on Thursday. The Jackets improve to 29-14 on the year with the victory, tying the school record for the most wins in a season.
DC scored its only run of the contest in the fourth, taking advantage of an error by the Thunder to plate the game's winning run despite failing to record a hit in the inning. Melanie Bushman drew a walk to lead off the frame, before being replaced by pinch runner Julie Miller.
Miller moved to second base on a sacrifice bunt by Marah Robinson, putting a runner in scoring position with only one out. Kayla Crager reached an a mishap by the Trine first baseman one batter later, allowing Miller to cross the plate for the game's only run.
Johnston would not need any more help , as she held the Thunder to just four hits in a complete-game effort to improve to 18-9 on the year. The senior's 18 victories ties a DC single-season record, a mark that she also reached in 2008. Johnston was helped by an outstanding defensive effort, as the Jackets did not commit an error for the fourth consecutive game.
The Jackets tallied just four hits in the contest, despite making solid contact off All-MIAA selection Amber Matthews throughout the game. Robinson led the way for Defiance, smacking a double to center field in the sixth inning while Aarika Davis, Mallory Faling and Tasha Stucke also recorded base knocks in the game for DC.
Defiance's senior class claimed their 105th victory in the win over Trine, making this group the most successful class in DC history.
Defiance will look for its school-record 30th victory tomorrow, as it faces Ohio Northern University in the second round of the NCAA Regional Tournament. The first pitch is scheduled for 2:00 p.m.